– by Joseph Jammer Medina

This one stings…

I was really looking forward to seeing what Cary Fukunaga, he of True Detective fame, was going to create with his new take on Stephen King’s It. Fukunaga’s plan was to take the story, break it up into two films, and explore two timelines with the same characters at different stages of their lives. Kind of like he did with the riveting first season of True Detective, actually. The first film was to be set in the past and follow a group of kids, as they dealt with a shapeshifting demonic entity that would often take the form of Pennywise The Clown. The second film would shift to present day, as the being returns to terrorize those same kids- who have now grown up. 

It now appears that the film is dead in the water. Or, at least, in a state of indefinite limbo.

The Wrap is reporting that Fukunaga abruptly exited the project over creative differences. The film, which was set to be a Warner Bros joint, got shifted to one of the WB’s smaller shingles- New Line. With that shift, came tighter purse strings and increased scrutiny. Things may have gotten worse thanks to this weekend’s Poltergeist– another horror remake that prominently featured a clown in its promo materials- not exactly slaying audiences, or making crazy money. 

A couple of notable issues between he filmmaker and the studio were casting and locations. While Will Poulter was said to be in negotiations to play Pennywise, The Wrap says that Fukunaga actually wanted Ben Mendelsohn (The Dark Knight Rises, Netflix’s Bloodline). But the studio refused to pay Mendelsohn what he wanted, which opened the door for the younger, less experienced Poulter. Fukunaga also wanted to use a town in New York as the stand-in for Derry, Maine- the fictional town where King set the story. New Line balked at that, too, since it would up the price tag.

With Fukunaga out, the state of the project is up in the air. If it happens at all, it’ll likely be done as one film now.

Stephen King chimed in, and seems perfectly happy to live with the TV mini-series adaptation of the book that came out back in 1990:

So this is a bummer. I rarely pay much attention to horror remakes, but with someone like Fukunaga at the helm, I was definitely interested in this one. Now? Not so much.

SOURCE: The Wrap

Joseph Jammer Medina is an author, podcaster, and editor-in-chief of LRM. A graduate of Chapman University's Dodge College of Film and Television, Jammer's always had a craving for stories. From movies, television, and web content to books, anime, and manga, he's always been something of a story junkie.